Slavery-free Easter

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Human Trafficking and Slavery


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Slavery-free Easter

Posted in February 28th, 2017

Ethical Easter EggsWill Your Easter Eggs  Be Slavery-free?

In 2015, Pope Francis said that “every person ought to have the awareness that purchasing is always a moral – and not simply an economic – act.”

Cocoa is a key ingredient of chocolate. Much of the chocolate sold in Australia is made using cocoa beans picked by children, many of whom have been enslaved, or forced to work in exploitative conditions. The International Labor Rights Forum (ILRF) estimates that there are 1.5 million children working in the cocoa sector in West Africa.

Did you know that the Easter eggs in Australian supermarkets might be made with cocoa beans picked by children, many of whom have been enslaved or forced to work in exploitative conditions with no access to education and other human rights? What ethical Easter eggs will you enjoy this Easter?

Spread the word about slavery-free Easter chocolate and enjoy chocolate that carries any of the following symbols on the wrapper.Ethical Symbols2Click here for Slavery-free Easter resources.


ACRATH Acknowledges Sr Anne Tormey rsm

Posted in February 27th, 2017

Thank You for Your Commitment and VisionIMG_2233

At the recent ACRATH National Conference, Sr Anne Tormey rsm (on right in photo) stepped down as President of ACRATH. In thanking Anne for her three years of leadership, Carmel Heagerty rsm reflected:

Anne gifted us with:

  • her capacity to listen, even when many wanted their voices heard at National Committee meetings
  • her knowledge, experience and skills in matters of governance
  • her generosity of commitment and time
  • her vision for ACRATH and her belief in operating as a team
  • her warmth and engagement
  • her inner presence.

Anne has been a blessing for ACRATH in her role as President and, we now bless Anne.

Sr Anne Tormey’s report on the work of ACRATH during 2016 can be found here. The ACRATH AGM named Sr Noelene Simmons sm as the National President of ACRATH for the next twelve months.


Sister of Mercy to Take Up UN Role

Posted in February 24th, 2017

Congratulations to Sr Angela Reed, an Australian Sister of Mercy and Member of ACRATH. On 1st March Angela will take up her new role as MIA (Mercy International Association) Global Action Coordinator at the UN in New York. Angela is a graduate of RMIT University’s School of Global, Urban and Social Studies, Melbourne, Australia, where she completed her Ph D on Human Trafficking. In the YouTube clip above Angela is interviewed about her new role by Shane Healy, Communications Director for the Melbourne Archdiocese.

Reflecting on the 2017 ACRATH Conference

Posted in February 19th, 2017

Having attended her first ACRATH Conference Sr Elizabeth Young rsm shares some thoughts on the experience.

ANZRATH at ACRATH Conference

Posted in February 19th, 2017

ACRATH members were delighted to welcome Sr Margaret Vaney sm to the ACRATH conference in Sydney recently. In this interview Sr Margaret explains the work she is doing as a member of ANZRATH (Aotearoa-New Zealand Religious Against Trafficking in Humans) in New Zealand.

End the Scourge of Human Trafficking

Posted in February 15th, 2017

IMG_2232ACRATH National Conference

ACRATH members from across Australia have gathered in Sydney for their National Conference. The theme for this year’s conference is ACT Now to End the Scourge of Human Trafficking.IMG_2212 The conference opened with the launch of the Australian Catholic Social Justice Council’s (ACSJC) publication Human Trafficking and Slavery written by ACRATH members Christine Carolan and Noelene Simmons. Sr Ruth Durick osu, President of Catholic Religious Australia, and Bishop Vincent Long van Nguyen, Bishop of Parramatta and Chairperson of ACSJC, spoke commending the document. Sr Anne Tormey, President of ACRATH then presented her annual report outlining the activities of ACRATH during the last twelve months and presenting some of the challenges ACRATH faces as we face the future.

BakhitaWorld Day of Prayer Media Release

The Australian Catholic Bishops’ Conference and ACRATH have released a media statement for the World Day of Prayer, Reflection and Action Against Human Trafficking which is held each year on 8th February, the feast of St Josephine Bakhita.

“On the Feast of St Josephine Bakhita today, 8 February, bishops and religious leaders across Australia support the call from Pope Francis to end the injustice of human trafficking against all people, in particular children.

‘They are children! Not slaves!’ is the theme for Bakhita Day this year. Pope Francis has designated today a world day of prayer, reflection and action against human trafficking.

St Bakhita is the Patron Saint for victims of slavery. The United Nations estimates that one in every three victims of human trafficking is a child. It is estimated that 30 million children have lost their childhood through sexual exploitation over the past 30 years. Annually, millions of children are trafficked into domestic servitude, sexual exploitation, pornography production, forced marriage, illegal adoption, forced labour, and to become child soldiers.” Read more…

Resources can be found here.

They are just Children! NOT SLAVES

Posted in February 7th, 2017

As we celebrate the World Day of Prayer Reflection and Action Against Human Trafficking let us remember the children of our world who are trafficked into child slavery. We pray they will be released from the bonds of slavery and that their right to love, protection and education will be respected.

Forced Marriage in Melbourne

Posted in January 31st, 2017

Melbourne Magistrate Court Charges Cleric

Forced marriageIn early January 2017 a Melbourne Magistrate Court charged a cleric over the forced marriage of a child. The marriage took place in September 2016. The man she was married to has also been charged for his part in the forced marriage. The case will continue to be heard in February. Read more…

Forced marriage is a crime in Australia. If you or someone you know is in a forced marriage or in danger of being forced to marry help is available at the My Blue Sky website.

Human Trafficking And Slavery

Posted in January 19th, 2017

A Response From Australian Catholics

12.16_SJ2561 Human Trafficking and Slavery A5 InvitationOn the World Day of Prayer, Reflection and Action Against Human Trafficking join Bishop Vincent Long Van Nguyen, Bishop of Parramatta Diocese, and Sr Noelene Simmons sm, NSW Regional Co-ordinator of ACRATH to learn what you can do to work against human trafficking and Slavery. The World Day of Prayer is held on the feast of St Josephine Bakhita.

Where:  Institute for Mission, 1-5 Marian St Blacktown
When:    8th February 2017
Time:     7.30pm – 9.00pm

Download the flyer here. Bring along some friends.

C 2011 ACRATH Inc – Australian Catholic Religious Against Trafficking in Humans